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Back-to-school shopping: The 2020 version

What to pick and what to ditch is the focus of this back to school shopping segment to help parents save money and plan for the new virtual classroom.

Back-to-school shopping is usually a typical task to tackle before the year begins, but this year in the coronavirus era, how much do you really need to buy?!

Newswatch 16's Ryan Leckey teamed up Riverside School District's Nicole VanLuvender. Nicole has worked in education for 26 years and is the principal at Riverside Elementary West in Taylor.  She also taught second grade for several years.  

In addition to fielding some viewer questions from Facebook, Nicole shared the following tips.

Back to school, the 2020 version: Virtual/hybrid learning

1. WAKE UP, DRESS UP, STEP UP

  • WAKE UP in the morning to start your virtual school day at the same time as if you were going to the actual school building.
  • DRESS UP in school attire. This will help to get you in the school mindset.
  • STEP UP your game and get ready to learn!

2. ESTABLISH A ROUTINE AND A SCHEDULE

Establish a routine and stick with it. Many students have physical been out of school for nearly six months. Start going to bed early, set the alarm, eat breakfast, and go to bed early.

3. ORGANIZATION WILL BE YOUR KEY TO SUCCESS

Select a place in your home that is as distraction-free as possible. Make sure you have a clean, uncluttered workspace with all of your materials at your fingertips. Have access to a power outlet as well. You may need to charge your device!

4. SHOPPING LIST

  • Noise-canceling headphones, headphones with a microphone (a gaming style headset), or earbuds will all be useful.
  • If using an IPad or tablet-style device, a keyboard accessory may be helpful.
  • Printer ink
  • Blue light blocking glasses
  • Crayons, paper, glue stick, pencils, scissors, etc.

5. BREAK TIME

Be mindful of your child's screen time. Make sure when on-line learning is not occurring, those breaks don't turn in to more screen time. Use breaks to take a walk, read a book, play with your pet, or work on a puzzle. Make sure to give your eyes a break from the screen.

6. PRACTICE INDEPENDENCE

For younger learners, have them practice opening items such as water bottles and lunch items. Work on shoe tying, buckling, and unbuckling themselves in the car and how to use their words to express their wants and needs.

7. PRACTICE SELF CARE

Make sure to take time for mindfulness and brain-breaks!